Some people believe in democracy and some say that you have to tolerate others´ opinions. I don´t.
Let´s say there´s a group of 10 people and everyone´s got a different opinion. These people are supposed to make a decision that matters to them all. What options do they have?
- Democracy. If everyone is a stubborn prick and sticks to their own opinion, you won´t get far with democracy. Also, this assumes that people make good decisions and have opinions based on facts. That´s simply not true and constitutes one of the problems of democracy.
- They decide at least one person whose opinion is more important than the others or who makes the final decision, a leader or judge so to speak.
- Whoever shouts the loudest wins (sometimes literally). The most logical decision doesn´t have any value if it isn´t screamed at the highest volume.
- Logical discourse. This requires experts or at least people capable of logic. It adds the problems of points 1, 2, and 3, although to a lesser degree.
As you can tell, the second option is the only one that has a chance of working.
How does an individual make a choice? Certainly not by asking every person alive for their opinion, which would give everyone´s opinion the same weight. A statistically significant survey requires more individuals than is reasonable, unless you got the money to do online surveys, for whatever they´re worth.
What an individual person does is comparing the opinions of the people they trust on a certain topic (which may or may not include themselves). Say that a guy benching 40 lbs tells you you´re doing your exercises wrong, you tell him to shove it. If Scot Mendelson comes along, you might listen. The point: If you trust your own expertise on a topic, that will be the main factor in making a decision. If you don´t have a clue, you will value the opinion of an expert more than that of a lay and perhaps more than your own. E.g. if you want a tattoo, you don´t trust your buddy when he pulls out a ballpoint pen. You go to a tattoo artist, because you value his expertise, and you tell your “buddy” to shove it, because your opinion on shitty home tattoos has more weight than his.